Why do horses kick when approached from behind?

David Sanderson All About Horses


As you know, horses have very powerful hind legs, and extra caution should be taken to avoid approaching a horse from behind. In this post, we will talk about why some horses will kick when approached from behind.

Horses can see nearly 360 degrees panoramic vision on each side of their bodies with their large eyes that are placed on the side of their heads. However horses have two major blind spots where they can’t see anything. Directly in front and under the horses chin is the first one where they have long whiskers that are sensitive which they use to feel things under them. The other blind stop s right behind there tails.

Why do they kick?

When approaching a horse from the rear they cant see or smell you very well so they may kick out of fear thinking your a predator. You should always try to approach horses from the side or front and stay away from there rear end to prevent kicking. In a situation where you have to approach the horse from behind, like when getting a horse out of a stall that is faced away from the door, you should talk to the horse so they know that someone is coming.

What should you do?

If a horse kicks at humans even though they know your there then you should retrain the horse so it understands that humans are not to be kicked at. There are several different training methods when teaching a horse to respect a human. When a horse kicks at a humans if is a major problem that needs to be fixed. One thing to try is to tie your horse up and stand next to him and pet his rear end, if he kicks out at you them smack him on the butt. Horses have very thick skin and their rear is one of the most muscular parts of their body so it wont hurt the horse. When you have a 1000lb animal kicking at you smacking them on the butt may sometimes be the only correction you can give at the time.

Video – Do NOT do this